QUICK HITS FOR THIS WEEK:
Old Dominion made the AP Top 25 home for the seventh consecutive week as they improved to No. 15, its highest showing in the AP Top 25 this season. The Lady Monarchs made jumped to No. 22 in the ESPN/USA Today Poll last Tuesday.
Four of the 12 CAA teams currently own a winning streak of six games or more heading into this week’s contests. Old Dominion will look to defend its unbeaten record at home this week when they host VCU on Thursday.
CAA women’s basketball is ranked ninth in the nation in the RPIRatings.com rankings through games of Jan. 9. Old Dominion leads the conference at #7, while James Madison follows at #52. VCU (#56) and UNC Wilmington (#91) finish out the CAA teams in the Top 91 of the rankings.
The CAA Weekly Telephonic press conference will continue on Tuesday, Jan. 15. Old Dominion’s Wendy Larry, Towson’s Joe Mathews and UNC Wilmington’s Ann Hancock will be available at Noon to discuss their teams and the league.
CAA teams have posted a 71-62 record against non-conference opponents. George Mason will travel to Lynchburg to play Liberty on Jan. 15 to close the non-conference regular season schedule for the CAA.
Drexel will host UNC Wilmington on Sunday for a 4 p.m. tip. The contest will be broadcast on Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic, Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia and Time Warner Cable in Wilmington, N.C.
QUICK HITS FROM LAST WEEK:
Four teams completed the week with a perfect record in conference play, as VCU, #18 Old Dominion, Drexel and Towson own a 3-0 mark in the CAA standings.
Old Dominion and VCU extended their unbeaten home records. The Lady Monarchs are now 6-0 at The Ted, while VCU owns an 8-0 mark at the Siegel Center.
*(averages consist of two games) VCU’s Krystal Vaughn led the league averaging 21.0 points during the Rams two CAA contests. UNC Wilmington’s Sahsha Taylor followed Vaughn with 20 points per game last week. Taylor, a junior, shot an impressive 75 percent (15-of-20) from the floor in the Seahawks. George Mason’s Moni Akintunde was a top the CAA rebounders’ list averaging 10.5 in the Patriots. The Rams’ LaKea Jones dished out 14 assists, while Delaware’s Kyle DeHaven snatched 12 steals in a pair of starts.
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK:
Narissa Suber Drexel
Mechanicsville, Va./Atlee, Sr., Guard
Drexel senior guard Narissa Suber received CAA Player of the Week honors after leading the Dragons in a pair of conference victories over Delaware and George Mason on the road last week. The senior guard averaged 19 points per game and added 4.5 rebounds per outing. She poured in a season-high 24 points, including an 11-for-11 showing from the free throw line, in the Dragon’s first win over Delaware since 1999. The Mechanicsville native scored 11 of her 14 points in the first period over the Patriots on Sunday. She finished the week shooting 7-of-12 (.583) from beyond the arc. Suber assisted the Dragons to extend their winning streak to seven games with the two conference victories last week. She also added three assists and three steals for the Dragons.
ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
Britne’ Rodgers Hofstra
Virginia Beach, Va., Fr., Forward
Hofstra freshman forward Britne’ Rodgers earned CAA Rookie of the Week after helping the Pride snap a 10-game losing streak as she poured in a game-high 18 points in Hofstra’s conference win over Northeastern on Sunday. In the road victory, the freshman grabbed a game-high eight rebounds, which tied teammate Linn Quamme. The Virginia Beach native averaged 13.0 points and six rebounds per game last week. In the Pride’s game against George Mason on Thursday, Rodgers tied for team-high honors with eight points. The rookie chipped in three assists, one block and one steal on the week.
ONE IS GOOD, TWO IS BETTER: The Lady Monarchs have made the AP Poll home for the seventh consecutive week as they improved to No. 15, its highest showing in the Top 25 this season. The Lady Monarchs made jumped to No. 22 in the ESPN/USA Today Poll last Tuesday.
CAA NO. 9 IN RPI RANKING (JAN. 14): The CAA is ranked ninth among the nations 32 Division I conferences in women’s basketball according to the RPI report compiled by Collegiate Basketball News through games of Jan. 13. Old Dominion leads the CAA ranked seventh in the most recent report. The Lady Monarchs are followed by James Madison at 52, VCU is ranked at 56, and UNC Wilmington at 91.
TOUGH SCHEDULE: Six CAA teams are ranked among the top 100 of toughest strength of schedule, according to the Collegiate Basketball News with games through Jan. 13. The Old Dominion Lady Monarchs have played the 13th toughest schedule in the nation. Delaware follows at 27, James Madison at 48, Northeastern at 64, Georgia State at 73 and UNC Wilmington closes out the top six from the CAA at 94.
TV EXPOSURE: CAA women’s basketball increased its television exposure with 21 games on the air this season. All 12 teams will make least one television appearance. Drexel will host UNC Wilmington on Sunday for a 4 p.m. tip. The contest will be aired on Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic, Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia and Time Warner Cable in Wilmington, N.C.
CAA TEAMS AMONG THE NCAA STATISTICAL LEADERS (Top 10): Through games of Jan. 13, James Madison stand fourth in the nation as the Dukes currently outrebound their opponents by a margin of 12.6 boards. Northeastern are seventh in the nation with an 79.3 free throw percentage. Towson steadied at seventh in the nation as they have averaged 13.6 steals an outing. VCU’s defense improved to eighth as they giving up only 52.1 points per outing. Drexel returned to the top 10 and is ranked seventh in turnovers per game giving up only 13.9 per contest.
CAA INDIVIDUALS AMONG THE NCAA STATISTICAL LEADERS (Top 20): Delaware’s Kyle DeHaven is snatching 4.1 steals per game and is ranked fourth among Division I players. Averaging 3.2 three-point field-goals per game, William & Mary’s Courtney Portell is ranked fifth, while Old Dominion’s T.J. Jordan is ranked sixth. James Madison’s Tamera Young is averaging 20.4 points per outing which is the 12th best average in the nation. Drexel’s Gabriela Marginean leads the conference and is ranked 10th in the nation with a 89.1 free throw percentage. Northeastern’s Lucia Pablos follows Marginean shooting 88.4 from the charity stripe (17th).
RETURNING TALENT: Seven of the 15 members from last year’s All-CAA teams returned for the 2007-08 season. Three of the five first-team honorees are back: Old Dominion’s T.J. Jordan, William & Mary’s Kyra Kaylor and James Madison’s Tamera Young.
TOP STATISTICAL LEADERS RETURN: The CAA welcomes back 13 of its top 20 scorers from last season. Also back are 12 of the CAA’s top 20 in rebounding and 10 of the top 15 in assists and steals.
CAA VS. 2007 NCAA TOURNAMENT TEAMS: The CAA have posted a 14-16 mark against teams which made an appearance in the 2007 NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship. In the opening week, Delaware defeated Delaware State, James Madison was victorious over Harvard, Northeastern collected a win over Coppin State, and Old Dominion defeated Middle Tennessee. Three wins came on CAA home courts, while Northeastern earned a victory over CSU on a neutral floor and Old Dominion defeated East Carolina, 88-66, on the road. George Mason fell to #9 Georgia in Athens, Ga. In week two of the new season, the Dukes posted a victory over UMBC, while Delaware fell to both #3 Maryland and TCU in the Preseason WNIT. In week three, the CAA squads played some of the toughest teams in the nation. Georgia State dropped a tough match to #5 North Carolina, while Hofstra fell to Harvard in the championship game of the Dead River Classic and Delaware lost to Louisville at the Panera Bread Challenge. George Mason defeated UMBC at home in a close 58-57 victory. Old Dominion fell to #2 Connecticut and #4 Stanford at the Paradise Jam. The Lady Monarchs finished the tournament defeating #22 Purdue. The Tribe of William & Mary then fell to Marquette in a road contest, 79-61. James Madison improved to 5-0 with an 80-55 victory over #14 George Washington on Nov. 27. ODU defeated #19 Michigan State, 79-73, on its home court on Dec. 2. The Lady Monarchs continued their strong non-conference schedule, but fell to #1 Tennessee, 83-51, on Dec. 5 and Towson dropped a 76-63 decision to New Mexico on the road. Towson defeated UMBC, 69-61, at home on Dec. 19. The Lady Monarchs defeated Delaware State, 70-28, but JMU fell in a close contest at home to #4 Maryland, 71-65, on Dec. 20. UNC Wilmington collected a 67-60 home victory over East Carolina. Delaware fell to Bowling Green, 64-54, on Friday, Dec. 21. Georgia State lost to cross-town rival Georgia Tech on Dec. 22, 79-67. On Dec. 29, James Madison fell to Pittsburgh, 69-61. CAA women’s basketball wrapped up the non-conference schedule against 2007 NCAA Tournament teams as #23 Old Dominion defeated #20 Vanderbilt, while Hofstra fell to a tough Florida State squad on Dec. 30.
CAA VS. Non-Conference RANKED TEAMS: The CAA is currently 4-8 against ranked teams, as Old Dominion has defeated #22 Purdue and #19 Michigan State and James Madison upset #14 George Washington. The Lady Monarchs fell to #2 Connecticut and #4 Stanford at the Paradise Jam over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. George Mason fell to #9 Georgia, Georgia State lost to #6 North Carolina, and Delaware fell to #3 Maryland. ODU recently fell to top-ranked Tennessee last Wednesday evening on the road. No.4 Maryland was challenged by James Madison in Harrisonburg, but the Terps came out on top with a 71-65 win on Dec. 20. Delaware dropped a 62-49 decision to #23 Arkansas at the Blue Sky Tournament on Dec. 29. No. 23 Old Dominion earned an 80-65 road victory against #20 Vanderbilt on Dec. 30.
CAA 2008 CHAMPIONSHIP: The CAA Championship will be hosted by the University of Delaware for the second straight season March 13-16, 2008. All 12 teams will participate in the thrilling event, which will be held at the Bob Carpenter Center.
CAA TEAMS UP WITH GIRL SCOUTS: For the 15th consecutive year, the Colonial Athletic Association and Girl Scouts of the USA are teaming up for the “Be Your Best” partnership. Each CAA institution has designated a women’s basketball game this season as “Girl Scout Appreciation Day”, with the goal of teaching girls the many benefits that can be gained from participating in athletics. Girl Scouts are invited to attend the games and cheer for their favorite CAA team. A variety of activities are planned in conjunction with the games, including autograph sessions with players, instructional clinics with coaches and spirit contests. Drexel and Towson will host their “Girl Scout Appreciation Day” this Sunday (Jan. 20). For complete information, including special events in conjunction with the games, visit www.caasports.com.
ODU CAPTURES 16TH STRAIGHT CAA TITLE: Old Dominion edged James Madison 78-70 in another thrilling title game to capture its NCAA record 16th consecutive CAA championship. The Lady Monarchs have never lost a CAA Tournament game since joining the league back in 1991-92. With the win, ODU advanced to its 24th NCAA Tournament, which ranks as the third-most appearances in Division I behind only Tennessee and Louisiana Tech. The Lady Monarchs have won 20 or more games during all 16 seasons as a CAA member.
FLASH BACK - CAA MAKING HISTORY IN 2006-07: For the first time in CAA history, three women’s basketball teams advanced to the 2007 NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament. Old Dominion, which earned the CAA’s automatic bid, was joined by James Madison and Delaware in the field of 64. Hofstra represented the CAA in the Women’s National Invitation Tournament, which marked the second straight season the CAA had four women’s basketball teams advance to postseason play. The Lady Monarchs made their 16th straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament and 24th overall. James Madison made its seventh NCAA appearance, but first since 1996--the last time the CAA had more than one team in the NCAA Women’s Tournament. Delaware made its second trip to the “Big Dance” which was its first since winning the America East automatic bid in 2002. Hofstra made its second straight appearance in the WNIT. Hofstra advanced to the quarterfinals of the WNIT with wins over Seton Hall and South Carolina. The Pride fell to Western Kentucky, 72-54, in the quarterfinals.
MAJORITY OF STARTERS RETURN: CAA teams return 55% (33-of-60) of their starting line-ups from a season ago. Drexel, George Mason, Northeastern, Towson and William & Mary only lost one starter from the 2006-07 season. UNC Wilmington and VCU, which both had all five starters back a year ago, return three starters this season.
DELAWARE (2-13, 1-2 CAA)
Delaware dropped a pair of conference contests last week to Drexel and William & Mary, each by four points. Delaware fell to Drexel, 66-62, for the first time in 18 games dating back to 1999. The Blue Hens suffered their first conference road loss when they lost to William & Mary on Sunday, 61-57. With the loss to the Dragons, Delaware lost its sixth straight home game at the BCC, the longest streak for a UD team since 1996-97. Senior forward Courtney Irving led the Blue Hens with a career-high 18 points and seven rebounds while fellow senior Kyle DeHaven posted her second double-double this season with 15 points and a career-high 11 rebounds to go with four steals and four assists. Freshman guard Tesia Harris added 12 points for Delaware. Delaware outrebounded Drexel 39-29. On Sunday, freshman guard Tesia Harris led the Blue Hens with a career-high 14 points on 6-of-11 shooting, while DeHaven, a second-year transfer from William & Mary, posted her best line of the year with 11 points, eight steals, seven assists, and zero turnovers. Sophomore forward Sha’Ron Harrison added nine points and nine rebounds in a solid effort for Delaware. DeHaven, Harris and Irving each averaged 13.0 points in the Blue Hens’ last two games. Delaware also established season highs in points in two consecutive games. At 2-13, Delaware is off to its worst 15-game start in its program history. The Blue Hens return home for a two-game homestand as they host UNC Wilmington on Thursday before entertaining Northeastern on Sunday.
DREXEL (8-6, 3-0 CAA)
Drexel extended its winning streak to seven games as the Dragons earned their first win over Delaware since 1999 by a score of 66-62 on Thursday and were victorious over George Mason, 62-42, on Sunday. Drexel’s seven game winning streak is the longest string of victories for the Dragons since the 1987-88 season when the team won eight straight from Jan. 30 to Feb. 19, 1988 as a member of the East Coast Conference. The team went on to its first conference tournament championship that season. Drexel, which won despite getting off 26 less shots from the field than Delaware, got a game-high 24 points, six rebounds, and perfect 11-of-11 free throw shooting from senior guard Narissa Suber, while sophomore forward Gabriela Marginean added 21 points and freshman guard Jasmina Rosseel contributed 12 points off the bench. Suber and Rosseel each hit three three-pointers. Marginean, who was saddled with two early fouls and sat out much of the first half, and Rosseel led the Dragons’ second half comeback. On Sunday, junior forward Nicole Hester scored a season-high 17 points to lead Drexel to its seventh straight victory and third in a row in conference play. The junior forward has reached double-figure scoring in three of her last five contests. Senior guard Narissa Suber chipped in 14 points and Rosseel added 13, to make up for the scoring of Marginean, who was limited to 23 minutes of play due to foul trouble. Stacy McCullough dished out a game- and career-high five assists against the Patriots, all in the first half. The Dragons will return home for a two-game homestand this week. Drexel will host Northeastern on Thursday before welcoming UNC Wilmington on Sunday. The match-up against the Seahawks will be aired on Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic, Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia and Time Warner Cable-Wilmington with a 4:00 p.m. tip scheduled.
GEORGE MASON (7-6, 1-2 CAA)
George Mason earned its first road win of the season with a 60-42 victory over the Pride of Hofstra on Thursday evening, before suffering its second loss at home against Drexel, 62-42. Senior Moni Akintunde notched her 14th career double-double in the win over the Pride. Akintunde’s 12 rebounds were a game high, and chipped in 16 points to nearly match the game’s high scorer, senior Lateisha Wade, who poured in 17 points. Wade also snatched a team-high five steals in the victory. The Patriots outrebounded the Pride 54-40, while grabbing a season high off the boards. On Sunday, Mason was led by Wade and sophomore Rashauna Hobbs, who scored 14 and 12 points respectively. Hobbs tied a career mark with four three-pointers against the Dragons. The Patriots have three games slated for this week starting with a non-conference contest against Liberty in Lynchburg on Tuesday. George Mason will return to conference play as they host James Madison on Thursday and travel to play Towson on Sunday.
GEORGIA STATE (3-11, 0-3 CAA)
Georgia State fell to 0-3 in conference play after playing the top three CAA teams, two on the road. The Panthers dropped a 93-49 decision to James Madison on Thursday and suffered a 63-48 set-back at VCU on Sunday. In Harrisonburg, Georgia State was led by junior guard Brittany Hollins’ 13 points and five assists, with freshman guard Traci Haltiwanger adding 10 more points. For the game, both teams got 67 shots, but JMU made 34 and State just 21 of its attempts. Madison also held a 54-32 rebound advantage with 23 offensive boards. The Panthers had 19 offensive rebounds with Shay Rawls having five offensive of her six total rebounds. Against VCU, Hollins led the Panthers with 17 points. Rawls added a double-double effort with 10 points and 12 rebounds against the Rams. Georgia State returns to Atlanta for a Thursday night home game with CAA rival William and Mary at the Sports Arena. The Panthers will travel to play Hofstra in Hempstead on Sunday.
HOFSTRA (3-11, 1-2 CAA)
Hofstra went 1-1 last week, including picking up its first CAA victory of the season and snapping a 10-game losing streak with a resounding 69-47 victory over Northeastern on Sunday. Hofstra fell to George Mason, 60-47, on Thursday in conference play. Against George Mason, junior guard Niki Williams and freshman forward Britne’ Rodgers led the way with eight points, with Williams adding six rebounds, five steals and four assists in the contest. Freshman guard Candice Bellocchio had a strong outing with six points, six rebounds and a game-high six assists. In the Pride’s 22-point win over Northeastern, the Pride placed four players in double figures led by Rodgers’ 18. Senior forward Linn Quamme contributed 13 points and eight rebounds. The win ended Hofstra’s 10-game losing streak, the program’s longest since a similar streak during the 1998-99 campaign. In addition, Hofstra has now won six straight over the Huskies dating back to the 2000-01 campaign. Hofstra had a strong performance on the boards in the contest as the Pride out-rebounded the Huskies, 44-30. It was the most rebounds in a game for the Pride since Hofstra pulled down 49 in their season-opening win over Iona. In addition, Hofstra was 15-17 (88.2%) from the charity stripe to help assist the winning effort. Hofstra returns home for a pair of CAA contests this week as the Pride will host Towson on Wednesday before closing the week with a game against Georgia State on Sunday.
JAMES MADISON (9-5, 2-1 CAA)
James Madison split on the week as they earned a 93-49 victory over Georgia State on Thursday evening, but fell to #18 Old Dominion in Norfolk, 82-57, on Sunday. Five James Madison players scored in double figures in the home victory over Georgia State. JMU senior guard Tamera Young led all players with 18 points. Also in double figures for the Dukes were freshman center Lauren Jimenez with 15 and senior guard Jasmin Lawrence with 13. The Dukes got 10 points each from redshirt senior forward Jennifer Brown and freshman point guard Dawn Evans. Evans also had a career-high nine assists. Young had a game-high nine rebounds, and Brown and Jimenez each had eight boards. It was the 20th consecutive home CAA win for the Dukes, who have not lost a league game at the Convo the last three seasons. It is the second-longest streak behind the school record of 30 regular-season home CAA wins (1984-85 through 1989-90 seasons). JMU shot better than 50 percent (34-67, 50.7%) from the field while the Panthers hit only 31.3 percent (21-67) of their field-goal tries. The Dukes held a 54-32 rebounding advantage. On Sunday, the Dukes lost their first CAA contest of the season while playing 18th-ranked Old Dominion at the Ted Constant Convocation Center in Norfolk. The Monarchs scored 26 unanswered points early in the second half to pull away for the win. The run, which spanned just under six minutes, put ODU ahead 66-42 with 11:06 to play. JMU was led by Young, who had her 34th career double-double with a team-high 17 points and a game-high 10 rebounds. Young passed both the 1,700 career point and the 900-career rebound marks in the game. She now has 1,714 points and 909 rebounds. Lawrence was the only other JMU player in double figures with 11. For the game, the Dukes committed a season-high 31 turnovers. Prior to the ODU match-up, JMU had outscored its previous three opponents 272-136, scoring an average of 90.7 points while holding its opponents to 45.3 points. The Dukes now have 24 wins in their history by more than 40 points. Four of JMU’s five losses have been to teams ranked or receiving votes in last week’s AP and USA Today/ESPN Top 25 polls (Liberty, Maryland, Pittsburgh and Old Dominion). The Dukes will visit George Mason on Thursday before hosting VCU on Sunday in Harrisonburg.
UNC WILMINGTON (9-5, 0-3 CAA)
UNC Wilmington’s unbeaten streak at home was spoiled by #18 Old Dominion on Wednesday evening. The Seahawks dropped a 67-55 decision to the Lady Monarchs at Trask Coliseum. UNCW then fell to Towson in a close 55-51 decision at home on Sunday. The Seahawks are now 0-3 in conference play for the first time since the 2003-04 season, when they also began their league slate with three consecutive losses. Against the Lady Monarchs, the Seahawks were led by Sahsha Taylor, who was the lone UNC Wilmington player in double figures, with 19. Leading scorer and rebounder Brittany Blackwell, who entered the game averaging 14.1 points and 7.8 rebounds, was held to just five points and two boards. The Seahawks’ came as close as 47-44 with 8:34 remaining, before the Lady Monarchs made their move to close out the game. The Seahawks shot a season-low .111 (1-of-9) from behind the arc versus the Lady Monarchs. On Sunday, Taylor paced the Seahawks with 21 points, including 16 in the first half. Taylor made her first eight shots and wound up 8-for-9 from the field and 5-for-6 at the line with four rebounds. Senior guard Stephanie Fernald and Becca Papach both made their first starts of the season against the Tigers. Sophomore guard Greta Luksyte chipped in 11 points, while sophomore guard Candace Walker pulled down 10 rebounds and Fernald dished out eight assists. The Seahawks .600 (12-of-20) field goal percentage from the floor in the first half was a season-high. UNCW returns to action this week with a pair of CAA road contests. The Seahawks open their trip with a game at Delaware before makings its way to Philadelphia for a 4 p.m. contest against Drexel on Sunday. The game against the Dragons is scheduled to air on Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic, Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia and Time Warner Cable-Wilmington.
NORTHEASTERN (5-8, 0-3 CAA)
Northeastern suffered a pair of conference losses last week as they fell on the road to Towson, 55-46, in conference play on Thursday evening and lost to Hofstra, 69-47, at home on Sunday. Against the Tigers, senior guard Lucia Pablos led all scorers with 13 points, and sophomore forward Kendra Walton had her third double-double of the season with 11 points and 10 rebounds. Sophomore forward Kim Carr dished out a game-high six assists. Northeastern forced Towson into 18 turnovers and to 37.7 percent shooting, but Towson made nine more foul shots. In the loss to the Pride, Carr scored a team-high 15 points for the Huskies. Senior forward Stefanie Hodell had eight points and five rebounds for Northeastern, while senior guard Shaleyse Smallwood and Walton each added seven points. Smallwood is just three points shy of becoming Northeastern’s ninth all-time leading scorer which is currently held by Besty Palecek (1995-99), who scored 1,243 career points for the Huskies. The Huskies enter a two-game road trip when they play Drexel on Thursday and Delaware on Sunday.
#15 OLD DOMINION (12-3, 3-0 CAA)
The then-ranked No. 18 Old Dominion Lady Monarchs, winners in their last six contests and in nine of their last ten games, improved to 12-3 overall and 3-0 in the CAA with victories of UNC Wilmington and James Madison last week. Against the Seahawks, junior Tiffany Green notched a career-high 21 points to help hold off a pesky UNC Wilmington Seahawk squad, 67-55, at Trask Coliseum to close out a four-game road stand. UNC Wilmington managed to cut the gap to three, 47-44, with 8:34 left in the game before Old Dominion went on a 10-2 run to hold on to a double figure lead the rest of the way. Seniors Megan Pym and T.J. Jordan joined Green in double digit scoring. Pym netted 12 points, along with a game-high nine boards, while Jordan collected 16, including 11 first half points. The Lady Monarchs followed by improving to 16-1 all-time in home league openers with an 82-57 victory over James Madison. Junior Jazzmin Walters collected a career-high 14 points as one of four Lady Monarchs in double figures. Jordan added in a game-high 18, including 14 second half points. Her 18 points moved into 19th on the all-time ODU scoring leader list, surpassing Lady Monarch legend and current WNBA Sacramento Monarch star, Ticha Penicherio. Jordan currently has 1,309 career points under her belt. Also scoring in double figures for the Lady Monarchs were senior Shahida Williams with 13 and sophomore Jessica Canady coming off the bench to tally 12. Behind by two, 35-33, at halftime, Old Dominion outscored the Dukes, 49-22, in the second half including a 26-0 run. Old Dominion returns to action this week at home against Virginia Commonwealth on Thursday and at William & Mary on Sunday.
TOWSON (11-3, 3-0 CAA)
With come-from-behind victories over Northeastern and UNC Wilmington last week, the Tigers extended their win streak to seven straight games. It is the first time that the Tigers have started their CAA season with a 3-0 record since the 2004-05 season. Towson finished with a 9-9 record that year. The Tigers’ seven-game win streak is their longest since a similar seven-game streak from December 2, 2004 to January 2, 2005. The school record for the longest win streak is 14 games, which was set from February 23, 1979 to January 15, 1980. The school record for the longest win streak during the Division I era is 8 games, which was set during the 1982-83 season. The Tigers overcame a pair of half-time deficits to earn the two wins last week. Senior Holly Mahan scored 11 points and grabbed 11 rebounds as she recorded her third double-double of the season to lead Towson against the Huskies. Sophomore guard Shanae Baker-Brice led the Tigers with 12 points and three assists while Mahan had three blocked shots and three steals to go with her 11 points and 11 rebounds. Sophomore Haliena Snowden added nine points, six rebounds and three steals. The Tigers, who trailed by 29-22 with 19:43 remaining in the game, held the Huskies to 27 per cent shooting in the second half. On Sunday, the Tigers were led by Snowden’s 12-point, seven-rebound performance. Sophomore forward Ashlee Keown made her first start of the season in place of sophomore Kandace Davis on Sunday against UNC Wilmington. The Tigers rallied from a 28-24 half-time deficit. The Tigers are now 4-2 this season when trailing at half-time. Snowden was one of three Tigers to score in double figures in the victory. Freeman scored a team-high 13 points and had five steals while sophomore guard Shanae Baker-Brice added 11 points off the bench. With five steals in the victory over UNC Wilmington, junior guard Alis Freeman moved into fifth place on the Tigers’ career assists list and is now one of seven players in school history to record 200 career steals. The Tigers will complete their quick two-game road trip on Wednesday night when they travel to Hofstra for a 7 p.m. game against the Pride. Towson will host George Mason on Sunday afternoon.
VCU (13-1, 3-0 CAA)
Virginia Commonwealth improved to 3-0 in conference play and remained unbeaten in the Siegel Center with victories over William & Mary, 73-53, and Georgia State, 63-48, last week. The 3-0 start in conference play is a first for the Rams. VCU has now won 11 straight home contests, the longest home winning streak since VCU moved its home games to the Alltel Pavilion at the Stuart C. Siegel Center. The 11-game home winning streak ties for the 10th longest home winning streak among Division I women’s basketball programs. It’s the second longest home winning streak in the team’s history as VCU won 18 consecutive home contests from Dec. 18, 1985 to Dec. 12, 1987 in the Franklin Street Gym. Against the Tribe, three Rams scored in double figures and were led by senior forward Krystal Vaughn’s 24 point performance. Junior center Quanitra Hollingsworth poured in 16 points and junior forward Radoslava Bachvarova added 14. Vaughn and Hollingsworth each grabbed a team-high seven rebounds. Senior guard LaKea Jones dished out a game-high eight assists and sophomore guard La’Tavia Rorie handed out seven. On Sunday, Vaughn paced VCU with 18 points and nine rebounds against the Panthers. The senior now sits six points away from 1,000 points for her career. Hollingsworth stands 11 points shy of 1,000 career points after accounting for 13 points and five rebounds against the Panthers. Also in double-figures were Bachvarova with 12 points and Rorie with 10 points. The Rams will face a pair of tough CAA members on the road this week as they travel to Norfolk, Va. to play #15 Old Dominion on Thursday and then visit Harrisonburg, Va. to play James Madison on Sunday.
WILLIAM & MARY (7-8, 1-2 CAA)
William and Mary fell to Virginia Commonwealth, 73-53, on Wednesday evening in Richmond, Va., before defeating Delaware, 61-57, at home on Sunday. Against the Rams, senior Devin James recorded a team-high 12 points to lead a quartet of Tribe players in double figures scoring. Senior Kyra Kaylor totaled 11 points, eight rebounds and three steals, while sophomore Tiffany Benson finished with 10 points and eight boards. Freshman Katherine DeHenzel added 10 points, all of which came in the second half. As a team, W&M out-rebounded the Rams, 41-35. In front of a home crowd, sophomore Kelly Heath scored a career-high 14 points to help lead the Tribe to its first conference win of the season. In addition to posting a career high in scoring, Heath also provided three steals in 24 minutes of action. Junior Courtney Portell also came up big with 14 points and sank four three-pointers. Kaylor and junior Dani Kell also finished in double figures scoring with 11 points apiece. As a team, the College held a 36-34 advantage on the boards and forced UD into 19 turnovers. A three-pointer by UD’s Tesia Harris with 30 seconds remaining cut the lead to two, 59-57, but Portell sealed the game with a pair of free throws. The Tribe’s sophomore Tiffany Benson has recorded at least one block in 27 straight games and leads the conference with 34 total (4.5 bpg) this season. Portell has hit at least two three-pointers in all but three games this season and leading the CAA averaging 3.2 treys per outing. The Tribe will return to action when it plays Georgia State on Thursday. William & Mary will finish the week at home when it hosts #15 Old Dominion on Sunday.